Help support Wordnik by adopting your favorite word!

Definitions

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • transitive v. To make clean by wiping; to wipe away; to cleanse; hence, to purge.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To wipe, or make clean by wiping; wash away.
  • In medicine: To cleanse by lotions, as a wound or ulcer. To purge. See deterge.

Etymologies

From French and Old French absterger or from Medieval Latin abstergēre, present active infinitive of abstergeō ("wipe off or away"); formed from abs- + tergeō ("to wipe off"). (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Turks of all sorts, men and women, and all over Greece, and those hot countries; to absterge belike that fulsomeness of sweat, to which they are there subject.

    Anatomy of Melancholy

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.